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Talibans capture Afghan Palace by 2026-09-11

In April 2021, U.S. President Biden announced a plan to remove U.S. troops from Afghanistan by September. As of the time of writing of this question (July 2021), media reports indicate that the withdrawal is now 90% complete, and should be fully completed by 31 August 2021.

Since the withdrawal of American military forces began, the Taliban has re-emerged as a significant regional power, taking over large swaths of the country.

In early July 2021, the Associated Press reported Taliban advances in several northern districts:

The Taliban's march through northern Afghanistan gained momentum overnight with the capture of several districts from fleeing Afghan forces, several hundred of whom fled across the border into Tajikistan, officials said Sunday.

Later the same month, Reuters reported the comment from the U.S. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, that Taliban forces currently control 50% of Afghan district centers:

Milley said more than 200 of the 419 district centers were under Taliban control. Last month, he had said the Taliban controlled 81 district centers in Afghanistan.

It is currently unclear whether the Taliban will be able to take control of the capital and largest city in Afghanistan, Kabul (which has an estimated 2021 population of 4.6 million and is the only Afghan city with over 1 million inhabitants), or if their control will be restricted to rural districts.

It is possible that the Taliban could lay claim to only some of Kabul's 22 districts, so rather than asking about Taliban control of the entire city, this question will focus on its potential capture of ARG, the Presidential Palace, located within District 2. ARG houses the offices of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

Will the Taliban capture the Presidential Palace in Kabul by 2026-09-11?

If credible media reports that the Taliban have captured the Presidential Palace in Kabul at some point on or before September 11, 2026, this question resolves positively, otherwise negatively.

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